Most important architecture news of January 2016

1. Alejandro Aravena wins Pritzker Prize 2016


Alejandro Aravena, 2016 Pritzker Prize Laureate

Alejandro Aravena has been named as the winner of the 2016 Pritzker Prize. The Chilean architect is known for his involvement in social housing projects. Throgh his “Do Thank” firm ELEMENTAL he has managed to build 2,500 units of social housing. According to the jury citation “Alejandro Aravena epitomizes the revival of a more socially engaged architect, especially in his long-term commitment to tackling the global housing crisis” and “has a deep understanding of both architecture and civil society”. Read more on

2. Italo Calvino`s “Invisible Cities” illustrated


Despina, Image © Karina Puente Frantzen

Karina Puente Frantzen, a Lima-based architect, has revealed his personal project:to illustrate each and every “invisible” city from Italo Calvino`s 1972 novel. See all the illustrations on

3. Chicago Architecture Biennial attracts over half a million visitors in 2015


Sou Fujimoto installation – “Architecture is everywhere”, Chicago Architecture Biennial, 2015

The first edition of Chicago Architecture Biennial was a success and the organisers made a commitment to host another edition in 2017. Through a series of exhibitions, installations and a program of events, the Biennial invited the public to engage with and think about architecture in a new and unexpected way and take part in a global discussion on the future of the field. It provided a platform for groundbreaking architectural projects and spatial experiments that demonstrate how creativity and innovation can radically transform our built environment.. Read more on

4. OMA redesigns KaDeWe deapartment store in Berlin

KaDeWe department store, Berlin, © OMA

OMA has revealed the project for the renovation and extension of Kaufahaus des Westens (KaDeWe) in Berlin, a historically department store with 60,000 metres retail space. The firms`s proposal is to treat the structure as four connected shops, each with its own identity, separate entrance and circulation space. See the project on

5. Studio 804 designs the Forum at the University of Kansas

05_Studio 804_kansas_3nta

University of Kansas, The Forum at Marvin Hall, Image © James Ewing Photography

Located in the Architecture department of University of Kansas, The Forum was designed and built by students according to LEED v2009 NC Platinium standard. This is the seventh LEED Platinum building designed by Studio 804, a non-profit organisation of University of Kansas whose goal is to “provide students an experience encompassing all the aspects of the design and construction process”. The organisation produces one building per year and constitutes a research laboratory for sustainable architecture and intelligent building solutions. Read more about their activity on

6. Construction robot lays bricks 3 times faster than human workers


SAM (semi-automated mason) and a human mason work together

As MIT technology review reports, SAM (semi-automated mason) is a robotic bricklayer which can complete mechanical and repetitive tasks like: picking up bricks, applying mortar and placing them in their designated location, being a reliable aid for the human masons. For full review visit

7. Sketchfab`s new virtual reality feature

ac570af1c4245a46a159dd35ba16895b083efa32Sketchfab, the platform for viewing and sharing 3D models has announced a new feature to their software – a VR (virtual reality) button which allows users to experience the 3D models in a new way. For more information and a virtual experience of your 3d models vist

8. Students Propose to Revitalize Sydney Opera House in 2015 MADE Program


MADE 2015 team, Image © Prudence Upton

MADE (Multidisciplinary Australian Danish Exchange) is an extra-curricular program whose aim is to promote international and multidisciplinary interaction between students Australian and Danish students of architecture. engineering and design in 2nd year or above.Established in honor of Sydney Opera House in 2013, the program is based on the Jørn Utzon design principles. The most recent project is the transformation of vehicle concourse under the Sydeney Opera House into a pedestrian-oriented space. Read more on

9. Slovakian cold war housing transformed into a sleek modern structure


© GutGut

Slovakian firm GutGut has recently completed a reconstruction project of a prefabricated panels housing block. Locally known as “panelaks”, many have called for their demolition after the communist regime, but the Slovakian architects had a different idea. See the project on

10. 3NTA January Rotating Editor: Athens


3NTA Rotating editor Athens



Author: Ramona Deaconu